'Hammeroid' name chosen for hospital from piles of entries

Ross Davidson, the first person to suggest Hammeroid as the name of the new Dunedin Hospital pile...
Ross Davidson, the first person to suggest Hammeroid as the name of the new Dunedin Hospital pile driver, is excited to see it in action. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH
Loud banging noises from the new pile driver being used to build the new Dunedin Hospital may become a pain in the butt.

Possibly for that reason alone, Hammeroid came out on top as the most popular name in an Otago Daily Times competition to name the heavy-duty piece of machinery.

Dunedin 79-year-old Ross Davidson was the first person to put forward the name Hammeroid, and said it was an obvious label for the big red tubular machine.

"It’s on a hospital site, haemorrhoids is a medical condition and it’s a common name for piles - so that’s what I came up with."

Seeing his suggestion come up as the winner left a lump in his throat, he said.

"When it got down to the shortlist, I thought, ‘I have a chance with that’.

"I’m rapt it’s been selected. It’s great."

Standing beside the 14-tonne pile-driving hammer are (from left) site supervisor Simon Ball,...
Standing beside the 14-tonne pile-driving hammer are (from left) site supervisor Simon Ball, project manager Phil Robertson and site engineer Todd Sherlaw. PHOTO: STEPHEN JAQUIERY

The custom-built 14-tonne hammer will soon begin work installing 428 piles for the new hospital and Mr Davidson was looking forward to seeing it in action.

The shout-out for name suggestions elicited hundreds, ranging from the simple to the slightly more off-piste.

After weeding out the more X-rated suggestions, a five-person judging panel, which included new Dunedin hospital acting programme director Bridget Dickson, demolition firm Ceres NZ operations manager Swaroop Gowda and piling firm March Construction operations manager Andrew March, came up with a shortlist of four to vote on - MD Hammer, Lipstick, Big Red and Hammeroid.

After online and telephone voting closed last night, Hammeroid was announced the clear winner after receiving 214 votes.

MD Hammer received 100 votes, Big Red received 81, and Lipstick received just 18 votes.

john.lewis@odt.co.nz

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